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Friday, June 21, 2024
Other SportsKlopp to leave Liverpool at the end of the season

Klopp to leave Liverpool at the end of the season

Jurgen Klopp has announced he will leave Liverpool at the end of the season.

The German took over at Anfield in October 2015 and has overseen a period of huge success, winning the Champions League, Premier League, FIFA Club World Cup, FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Super Cup, as well as the FA Community Shield.

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But he says he is now “running out of energy” and needs a break.

He told the club’s official website: “I can understand that it’s a shock for a lot of people in this moment, when you hear it for the first time, but obviously I can explain it – or at least try to explain it.

“I love absolutely everything about this club, I love everything about the city, I love everything about our supporters, I love the team, I love the staff. I love everything. But that I still take this decision shows you that I am convinced it is the one I have to take.

“It is that I am, how can I say it, running out of energy. I have no problem now, obviously, I knew it already for longer that I will have to announce it at one point, but I am absolutely fine now. I know that I cannot do the job again and again and again and again.

“After the years we had together and after all the time we spent together and after all the things we went through together, the respect grew for you, the love grew for you and the least I owe you is the truth – and that is the truth.”

Liverpool finished a disappointing fifth in the Premier League last season but have had a much better campaign in 2023-24. They currently top the table, five points clear of Manchester City.

Klopp is satisfied that improvement enables him to walk away with his head held high.

He added: “I told the club already in November. I have to explain a little bit that maybe the job I do people see from the outside, I’m on the touchline and in training sessions and stuff like this, but the majority of all the things happen around these kind of things. That means a season starts and you plan pretty much the next season already.

“When we sat there together talking about potential signings, the next summer camp and can we go wherever, the thought came up, ‘I am not sure I am here then anymore’ and I was surprised myself by that. I obviously start thinking about it.

“It didn’t start [then], but of course last season was kind of a super-difficult season and there were moments when at other clubs probably the decision would have been, ‘Come on, thank you very much for everything but probably we should split here, or end it here.’ That didn’t happen here, obviously.

“For me it was super, super, super-important that I can help to bring this team back onto the rails. It was all I was thinking about. When I realised pretty early that happened, it’s a really good team with massive potential and a super age group, super characters and all that, then I could start thinking about myself again and that was the outcome. It is not what I want to [do], it is just what I think is 100 per cent right.”

Liverpool are still fighting in four competitions and Klopp is eager for his long farewell not to distract from the quest for trophies.

He said: “We will have a moment, maybe the last matchday here or somewhere else – I mean in other countries or other competitions. There’s enough time to do these kinds of things. Let’s now really go for it. The outside world want to use this decision, laugh about it, want to disturb us.

“We are Liverpool, we went through harder things together. And you went through harder things before me. Let’s make a strength of it. That would be really cool. Let’s squeeze everything out of this season and have another thing to smile about when we look back in the future.”

Mike Gordon, the president of Fenway Sports Group, paid tribute to Klopp and the impact he has had on Merseyside.

He said: “First and foremost, on behalf of John Henry and Tom Werner, I would like to state our profound appreciation for Jürgen. It goes without saying that we will be hugely saddened to lose not just a manager of such calibre, but a person and leader for whom we have enormous respect, gratitude and affection. At the same time, we fully respect his wishes and the reasons why he has decided the current season will be his last at Liverpool.

“In keeping with Jürgen’s expressed wishes, we will save the comprehensive tributes for a more appropriate time but nevertheless, we would be remiss if we did not take this opportunity to reaffirm that his appointment remains one of the greatest blessings of our time as owners.

“The incredible achievements of the intervening years speak for themselves, so too does the joy that Jürgen and his team have brought to all of us supporters. His many accomplishments will never be taken for granted. To appropriate an adage synonymous with another Liverpool managerial great, Jürgen Klopp ‘made the people happy’ and we have total confidence he will continue to do so until his eventual departure.

“It is testament to Jürgen’s unstinting professionalism and ongoing commitment to the best interests of Liverpool FC that his decision was arrived at in a way which allows for business as usual to be maintained for the remainder of his tenure while simultaneously creating an opportunity for us to prepare for the future.

“Our priority now is two-fold. First, to ensure that the progress that has been made on the pitch this season is maintained in the final months of the campaign. Second, to continue the due diligence behind the scenes which will allow our football operations department to adapt to a future without Jürgen. As ever, these ambitions will be pursued in the best interests of the club and its supporters and we will update fans as and when significant developments are made.

“Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to place on record our gratitude to Jürgen for everything he has done and continues to do for Liverpool Football Club. Thank you, Jürgen. When the time comes, you will never walk alone.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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